Hi, i have been reading the forum for a while and i can sympathise with absolutely everyone on here
Unfortunately i split with my ex whilst my daughter was only 3 months old, over the last 3 months it has been nothing short of a nightmare, i have tried everything to see our daughter yet she is refusing contact unless it is in a contact centre or her mums living room for half an hr, which i bit the bullet and went along with but as i was doing so she stopped contact again and again, nobody seems to understand why she is treating me like a criminal
I requested mediation which was refused, she refuses and ignores my communications, so have court date set for the 19th this month
Any advice would be great, no previous history or violence, just a bitter controlling woman trying to use me as a cash machine
I'm sorry to hear you're having a tough time of it, what you describe is more common than you would think and many of our members can relate to how you're feeling.
Contact and child maintenance are two entirely separate issues in the eyes of the court, if she is causing you problems with the money side of things, you can actually open a case with the CMS yourself, this would hopefully stop her demands for more. Have you used the online calculator to see roughly how much you should be paying? Here's a link
As your little one is still so young, when contact does resume it will probably be in a Contact Centre, but this can often be a good thing and can give you and your child time to bond away from maternal interference.
If the mother is breastfeeding this will be taken account of and contact will start with short frequent contact and build up over time. There are no hard and fast rules about how much contact you will get or when overnights will start, but it's always better to ask for more than you would be happy with, as this allows you to be seen to compromise without giving up too much.
I started my nightmare when my son was 1. A progressive contact was suggested and it started in a contact centre. In my opinion what ever she offers before court take it, I was stubborn and reduced the contact centre and ended up there anyway. The more time you get under your belt the quicker it progresses. Great advice from Mojo tho and something that definitely worked for me as time went on. Ask for more but expect a little less. You want to leave yourself room for negotiation. Good luck.